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PHILADELPHIA — The first notice of appeal has been filed in an attempt to halt the planned $1 billion settlement of NFL concussion lawsuits.

Lawyers for former Green Bay Packers guard Craig Heimburger say they'll ask a federal appeals court to review a judge's decision last month to approve the deal.

Heimburger, 38, played in two games with the Packers in 1999 and 11 games with the Buffalo Bills in 2001. The Packers drafted him out of Missouri in the fifth round of the 1999 NFL draft.

Lawyers who negotiated the settlement fear an appeal will delay payments to former players battling Lou Gehrig's disease and other chronic illnesses.

The settlement could pay several million dollars to younger retirees with the most severe neurological problems.

But some opponents believe the NFL is getting off lightly and dislike the plan.

Heimburger's lawyer didn't return a call placed Wednesday seeking comment.

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